The city of Puyallup expects to issue a building permit next month for Chick-fil-A, the Georgia-based national chain that specializes in fried chicken sandwiches.
Chick-fil-A company spokeswoman Kim Hardcastle noted, “We don’t confirm locations until we are past the permitting stage,” but the city and the company have been discussing since 2014 the building of a Chick-fil-A on South Hill at the corner of 39th Avenue Southwest and South Meridian, said Tom Utterback, the development services director for the city of Puyallup.
“They are estimating an early 2017 opening,” said Utterback. He will meet with company officials in July about applications. At that meeting, he expects demolition and building permits to be issued.
The building that resides at that intersection, which tenants recently vacated, will be torn down and replaced with a 4,800-square-feet building on the 1.20 acre site. (Nearby, a new Hub Restaurant from Tacoma’s Harmon Brewing Co. will be built, with an expected October 2016 opening).
This will be the third South Sound Chick-fil-A. The first opened in April 2015 near the Tacoma Mall.
In Lakewood, a Chick-fil-A will soon be under construction where The Schooner Pub now sits. Lakewood’s economic development manager Becky Newton gave this update for the Lakewood Chick-fil-A: “The building permits have been issued. The plan is to break ground October 2016 and open in June 2017. The demo permit will be issued August 2016.”
“They’ll be under construction by the middle of July, they’re telling us,” said Utterback of the South Hill location.
Traffic congestion from the deluge of Chick-fil-A fans has been a concern at every opening in the Puget Sound region. Utterback said city officials are worried about the addition of a fast food restaurant with a drive-thru near an intersection that’s already the busiest in South Hill.
“If there is short-term congestion expected, our city traffic engineer can require them to hire some temporary traffic control on their dime to take care of the traffic,” said Utterback. That can last “however long they need it, whether it’s the opening weekend or beyond.”